International education is an important part of Australia’s economy. In 2019 more than 750,000 international students studied in Australia contributing $40.3 billion dollars to the Australian economy, and generating nearly 250,000 jobs. The Australian Government supports international education through the National Strategy for International Education 2025.
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The English language teaching sector is an integral part of Australia’s international education sector. Every year tens of thousands of international students undertake stand-alone English language study, while many more undertake English language learning as a pathway to further study.
In 2019 more than 750,000 international students studied in Australia, with international students contributing $40.3 billion to the Australian economy in 2019 and supporting nearly 250,000 jobs nationally.
The most recent data from English Australia shows that in 2018 nearly 180,000 students studied English in language colleges, schools, institutions and universities in Australia, with two thirds studying on a student visa.
The Australian Government is committed to supporting the sustainable growth of the English language teaching sector.
On 21 February 2020, the Minister for Education, the Hon Dan Tehan MP, released a draft English Language Teaching International Engagement Strategy 2025 for public consultation. The draft strategy, which was developed in close consultation with English Australia, outlined how the Australian Government will support the English language teaching sector to deliver on its international potential. The draft strategy was designed to support and complement the National Strategy for International Education 2025.
Since the release of the draft strategy in February 2020 the emergence of COVID-19 pandemic has had an enormous impact on the global economy and the international education sector. On 20 May 2020 Expert Members of the Council for International Education met to discuss the development of a new Australian Strategy for International Education, to underpin the international education sector’s recovery and renewal in a ‘COVID-normal’ landscape.
Development of the English Language Teaching International Engagement Strategy 2025 has now been put on hold pending the release of this new Australian Strategy for International Education in 2021. The department will refresh the draft English Language strategy and undertake further consultations with the English Language Teaching sector in 2021 once the Australian Strategy for International Education has been finalised.